The Bottom Line
Carnie Wilson: Unstapled takes a look at the hectic life of Wilson, who hosts The Newlywed Game on GSN. She's got lots of things happening at once, from normal family struggles to trying to lose weight to trying to start a new business.
While the show itself is watchable, it might not be the best fit for a network that is trying to gain back a loyal audience of game show fans. New viewers may not be easily hooked either based on the premiere episode, which crams a lot of activity into one short program.
- Carnie Wilson has an interesting back story and currently has lots going on in her life.
- All angles of Wilson's life are explored.
- The show jumps from one crisis, issue, or event to another.
- Wilson often seems to be playing up to the cameras.
- We don't get a lot of time to learn more about the other people on the show.
- The show would likely do well on another network, but doesn't fit GSN's programming angle.
- 'Carnie Wilson: Unstapled' is a half-hour, documentary-style reality TV show.
- Premiere date: January 14th, 2010. Airs Thursday nights at 6:30pm Eastern, repeating at 9:00pm.
- Features Wilson, her husband Rob Bonfiglio, their two daughters Lola and Luci, and an assortment of friends and relatives.
Guide Review - 'Carnie Wilson: Unstapled' Built for a Different Audience
GSN is once again wandering into reality television territory with this documentary-style show that features their own Newlywed Game host, Carnie Wilson. The last time the network offered this type of programming, the focus was on iconic game show host Chuck Woolery. Where Woolery was already a well-known figure to game show fans, Wilson is a newcomer to the scene. Will the GSN faithful tune in for this so-called "in-depth" look at her life? Sadly, it's not likely.
Carnie Wilson: Unstapled uses the same formula as most of these types of shows employ. We meet Wilson and her family, and attempt to get a better understanding of her life through a series of clips that are meant to illustrate different aspects of her career and lifestyle. Throughout, Wilson narrates how she was feeling when these events were happening, and provides insight and background info where necessary.
Carnie Wilson and her family (including husband Rob Bonfiglio and their two children) are likable enough, and many people enjoy getting a glimpse into the lives of famous people. There are a couple of main problems with the show, however.
First, the premiere episode is all over the map. While it's important to hook viewers with the first episode of a series, we're introduced to all of Wilson's struggles at once: hosting The Newlywed Game, losing weight, trying to start a baking business, finding alone time with her husband, making amends with an old friend, and even continuing to make music. Jammed into just over 22 minutes, it's a little overwhelming.
The second problem with the show might be a personal thing, but to me, it seems like Wilson is constantly aware of the cameras. She naturally has a big personality, but she appears to be overdoing it, even in the interview segments.
Carnie Wilson: Unstapled has the potential to grow into a decent half-hour reality show, especially if they start to focus on one or two issues at a time per episode. Wilson has many things going on in her life now that many 'regular' people will be able to relate to. The real problem is going to be in convincing die-hard game show fans, who are used to seeing games on the Game Show Network, to tune in.